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Wednesday 9 July , by Ruth Masliyah. The proposal for the legalization of prostitution and the establishment of co-op brothels for the Winter Olympics in Vancouver has sparked a heated debate. Although the goal of these brothels is to improve the safety and security of sex workers, legalizing prostitution is not adequate to ensure the safety of sex workers. Rather, it will encourage the systemic and oppressive values and practices prostitution is rooted in, and will only increase the safety of sex-trade profiteers.
One panelist argued that legalized prostitution would not reduce the harm or trauma inflicted on women in the sex trade. We hold that legalizing prostitution in Vancouver will not make it safer for those prostituted, but will merely increase their numbers. The main criticism against the proposition is that it will not ensure the safety of sex workers but, instead, will promote human trafficking, pushing more vulnerable women into the sex trade.
The demographics of sex workers also raise important questions regarding the legacy of colonialism and the overrepresentation of Native women in prostitution. The experience of marginalization, poverty, diminished status in society, and sexual abuse in catastrophic proportions makes First Nations children prone to becoming victims of the sex industry. AWAN also criticized the legalization of brothels for perpetuating the oppression of women and effectively legitimizing the forms of abuse that lead women into prostitution.
It is the duty of the policy-makers to protect these vulnerable women from the profiteers of human trafficking and the sex trade. A detailed examination of the social structures, systematic values, and government policies that exacerbate the sex trade is an essential first step. This effort has to be followed-up by an increase in the resources devoted to address the factors that oppress and force women into prostitution, and to increase their socio-economic status.
Canada can do better than legalizing prostitution- it must help marginalized women to make a living without putting their mental or physical selves at risk. Critiques Culture Livres. Soutenir le Journal. Ruth Masliyah is a social worker in Montreal. Je donne. Agissez maintenant! CC ] Design web.